What We've Been Up To During The Shutdown Hello to all our supporters! During this incredibly difficult period, the PACE team have been changing the way we support our children and their families. Because we haven’t been able to run our usual services, our team have been hard at work creating new initiatives and making a real difference to families right across our Camden community. A massive thank you to our team members, who have been working so hard to make all this possible and support our community in the most difficult circumstances. Keep scrolling to read more about the great work our hardworking team has been doing across the borough of Camden! Maintaining Play Services We are offering families living in overcrowded accommodation, or who lack of outdoor space, free use of our play space for those families in all of our playcentres. Timeslots have been offered to families referred from Early Help and other Camden Council services. At the moment these sessions are fully booked out, showing just how much demand there is in Camden for safe outdoor play spaces for children. Over the Easter break, we worked with Camden Council and local schools to host play sessions for children referred to us by Camden Council and the children of key workers. The children painted some lovely rainbows with a powerful and encouraging message for the people of Camden. Going Digital While we have been forced to limit our face-to-face services, the entire team has come together to stay in touch with our families and create lots of great digital content. The team have been busy creating craft tutorials showing children how to make butterfly wings, a suncatcher, a toy postbox and a lion. Our team have also made videos on counting, letters, sing-alongs, stories for the little ones and games. We have been sending out weekly newsletters for both our pre-school and school-age groups to share in our weekly parent newsletters. Families have joined in, sharing their important news, photographs and examples of their work in our newsletters. We’ve also been keeping in touch with our families, supporters and the wider Camden community through our Twitter, Facebook and Instagram profiles. Making videos is a new skill for us, so we had a few "trial runs" before we found our stride. Enjoy this blooper from one of our early efforts: Keeping in Touch with our Community During the shutdown, we've been regularly checking in on our families via phone and linking families that need our help with services such as food delivery, food banks and other social services. We've been hard at work creating play packs and a library full of books, toys and games for children in Camden. Our play packs are full of books, puzzles, crafts and activities to entertain children aged 4 to 12, and maybe sneak in a little learning too! We have been distributing these packs from our Fairfield Playcentre, and with Camden Council and community groups like Life After Hummus. The massive demand for play packs took us by surprise, so we’ve been putting in long hours and working with Camden Council, local funders as well as launching our own campaign to get packs to as many children as possible. Take a tour of our toy library and play pack factory: Our Fortune Green team have been working with The Felix Project, a charity which collects food that cannot be sold and delivers it to charities and schools. We've been working with them and offering space to ensure local families can have fresh, nutritious meals. Specialist Services We have been hosting Friday sessions for children with disabilities and autism every fortnight, with children referred by Short Breaks Commissioners and some of our regulars. These daytime sessions have featured art and play activities and have been a real hit with participants! We want to thank you for your support and understanding through these really difficult times. Hopefully we will be back to normal services soon, but in the meantime, you can keep up with all our latest news by following us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram and joining our mailing list!